DAY 31

Chuck E Cheese Blues...

Haldan's outage schedule has created new challenges. In order for the house to be quiet today, a Saturday, we were forced to venture out and find an activity that would entertain the children for a while. That's how we ended up at Chuck E Cheese on a Saturday, because no one in their right mind would do that just because; and I also had promised the children we would go this month and the end of the month is here.

Let's rewind. Camille has been traumatized by Chuck E forever. I think the last time we went she was still hiding under the tables when he came out. She's seven. It's a weird phobia that I don't totally understand. So, I told the kids we could go if they would agree to a photo with Chuck E for my photo of the day. They both agreed. Camille even said that she wasn't afraid anymore!

I asked an employee if there was a scheduled time that Chuck E would make an appearance because my daughter wanted to see him. She asked if it was her birthday and I told her no, but that she has been afraid of him for over 7 years and says she's not afraid any longer. They told me to return in 5 minutes and that he would make an appearance. So, I rounded up the kids and we waited. While we waited we talked about how this was just a person in a costume just like Halloween. Camille seemed fine until he came out and then she totally freaked out! I reminded her that it was just a person in a costume and she scrunched up her face and said, "He looks big and scary!" We waited a couple minutes. Connor gave him a hug and then he left. We just couldn't convince Camille to get near him. The other employee asked if they should try it again, but I told her I didn't think it was going to work. She suggested that the person dressed as Chuck E introduce himself without the costume.

So he came over and told Camille that he was dressed up as Chuck E. Even though she felt more comfortable with him she still didn't want him to go put that costume back on. I should be a more understanding mother, but for some reason felt annoyed. I guess I just am ready for her to move on. How are we ever going to be able to go to Disneyworld if she's scared of Chuck E? She agreed to a picture with just the guy, but not the guy in the costume. It was at least a step in the right direction. So, no picture of Camille with Chuck E today.

The kids played a bit longer while I tried to not give in to feelings of anxiety and claustrophobia- there were people everywhere! They ran out of tokens and it was finally time to cash in the tickets and go home. Connor ended up with 238 and had 402 from another visit. Camille ended up with 99 tickets. As she turned around her sad little face was priceless as she said, "I didn't even get 100." Connor felt a little bad for her, especially since he had over 600 tickets himself, and offered her a quarter. That seemed to make her feel better and she perked up a little.

By this point I had a throbbing headache and had to help the children figure out what to spend their tickets on, the job Haldan usually takes care of. Somehow it all worked out. The kids went in together and got a bag of cotton candy. Connor got a ball for our basketball game at home, a twisty straw, and a giant sucker. Camille got a few little items, I think body glitter and a sucker.

We made it to the car and I insisted they hand sanitize immediately. Something about that place makes me feel filthy. I'm sure if germs weren't invisible I wouldn't be alone in my feelings.

The ironic part of the story is that it actually turned out to be a beautiful day here. I think it got up to 40 degrees today. Why in the world didn't I just send them outside to play all day rather than putting myself through that kind of torture?

At least it's another Chuck E Cheese day behind us... and we don't have to go back any time soon. So, until next time...


  1. Lish-

    If you lived here, you'd be outside taking your kids on bike rides and playing at the park year round. I feel for you girl. You are a better mom than me, I would not have done Chuck E Cheese. Love ya girl!

  2. Lish there is never a dull moment with you guys lol! I wouldn't step foot in a chuke e cheese if you paid me C: Did you get the b-day card we sent you via e-mail?

  3. That's a great story. I always feel a little white trash when I got there, but of course the kids love it so we end up going a few times a year.

  4. How strange, we also went to Chuck's yesterday! Ugh--it was sooo packed. And the boys brought friends, so we were chasing 5 kids around! We usually go on a weekday night so no one else is there, and we will never go on a Saturday in winter again!

  5. Michael has always hated Chuck E Cheese the character, too. We went to a birthday party there about a month ago and since he was with a bunch of other kids he was fine but, if it was just him, he probably would have ran for it. I would have been irritated too. I find that I have sympathy for everyone but my own family. I am working on that one. I am so happy that you got to have your mom for a week. I hope that the scheduling gets a bit easier for all of you, quickly.

  6. Now I understand why Camille said to me on Sunday that she didn't like Chuck-E-Cheese. I thought is was a random comment at the time, but now it makes perfect sense. This is a place I have avoided quite well.